Isn’t Christmas all about family?

Pastor Darren McCormick tells the story of a third grade Sunday School teacher who was trying to drive home the importance of family life. She illustrated her point by referring to the commandment “honor your mother and father.” Then she added, “Now that commandment about honoring your mother and father deals with how we are to treat our parents — can any of you tell me a commandment that deals with how we are to treat brothers and sisters?”

There was a long pause and then one boy’s face lit up as he said, “I know! Thou shalt not kill!”

In spite of the battles we have within our families, they are often one of life’s greatest blessings to us. So much so many tend to turn their families into idols, a behavior radically contradictory to one of the first lessons we can learn from Christmas.

That’s when God gave away part of His “family” for His glory.

The Christmas story is loaded with lessons and examples for us, but we tend to skip over this example of God giving His Son. Oh we talk about it often, we just don’t see it as an example to be followed. It’s fine with us for God to give His Son for His glory, just don’t ask us to give our family to God for His glory!

But God does expect us to follow His example. Jesus put that expectation into blunt words for us:

“If any of you love your father or mother more than you love me, you are not worthy of being mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than me, you are not worthy of being mine,” Matthew 10:37-38.

For many, Christmas is all about family and giving to family, rather than Christmas being all about Christ and giving all — including our families — to Him.

What’s the order of priority in your Christmas?